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Secretary U.S. Department of Homeland Security Washington, DC 20528 Homeland Security August 18,2011 The Honorable Harry Reid Majority Leader United States Senate Washington, DC 20510 Dear Senator Reid: Thank you for your letter to President Obama regarding the Administration's immigration enforcement policies and the Development, Relief, and Education for Alien Minors (DREAM) Act. The President has asked me to respond on his behalf. Over the past two years, the Department of Homeland Security (DHS) has established clear and well-reasoned priorities that govern how DHS uses its immigration enforcement resources. These priorities focus our resources on enhancing border security and identifying and removing criminal aliens, those who pose a threat to public safety and national security, repeat immigration law violators and other individuals prioritized for removal. Initially set forth in a March 2010 memorandum from U.S. Immigration and Customs Enforcement (ICE) Director John Morton, these priorities were recently reiterated and clarified in Director Morton's June 17,2011 memorandum regarding the exercise of prose cut oria I discretion by ICE personnel. While additional work remains, we have made tremendous progress in our effort to focus DHS resources on these enforcement priorities. Our FY 2010 statistics are illustrative. In FY 2010, ICE removed 79,000 more aliens who had been convicted ofa crime than it did in FY 2008. As a result, for the first time ever and due to the expansion of the Secure Communities program, over 50 percent of the aliens removed by ICE in a fiscal year were convicted criminals. Of those removed with no confirmed criminal conviction, more than two-thirds were either apprehended at the border or were repeat violators of our immigration laws. As enforcement directives continue to be implemented, we anticipate that these trends will increase in FY 2011. The President has said on numerous occasions that it makes no sense to expend our enforcement resources on low-priority cases, such as individuals like those you reference in your letter, who were brought to this country as young children and know no other home. From a law enforcement and public safety perspective, DHS enforcement resources must continue to be focused on our highest priorities. Doing otherwise hinders our public safety mission-clogging immigration court dockets and diverting DHS enforcement resources away from individuals who pose a threat to public safety.

Janet Napolitano Letter

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